Bonneville Power Administra-tion (BPA) has increased the minimum flow through hydro dams on the Columbia river in Washington, US.

The flow now stands at 1698m3/sec, from last year’s rate of 1557m3/sec, and is to be maintained until the spring. The increase was not prompted by anticipated changes in the power demand for this period but was done to protect salmon nests, according to a BPA spokesman. BPA, which markets hydro power generated by the Columbia dams, said the minimum flow requirement is higher than required during periods when demand for power is low, such as Sundays, while flows through dams are higher than this minimum during peak demand periods.